IAGenWeb Project

Adair County Iowa

USGenWeb Project



James Murphy and Sarah Nancy Deakins

James Murphy was born 1810 in Franklin Co. North Carolina

He married Sarah Nancy Deakins in 1830 in Putnam Co. Indiana and moved the family to Adair Co. in Sept. 1854

Together he and Sarah had 14 children, the last three were born in Adair Co.
Their children were: John Whitley, Sion, Henry, Robert Thomas, Martin V. James Harrison, Anne Elizabeth, Rachel, William F., Daniel Branson, Thomas M. Perry C., Margaret Ann, and Electa.

Both Sarah and Electa died during or right after this final birth in 1859.

On July 13 1861 James married his second wife Catherine Burns in Madison Co. Iowa and they had seven more children that I know of. (My mom claims he had 24 children by the two wives) The ones I’ve found records for in this second family are:
Mary Eliza, Sherman, Mahala, David, Edward, Polly and Anna Sarah.

This second family lived in various parts of Missouri and Kansas

A newspaper article from Winterset Madisonian-Dec. 14, 1888 tells of his death:

“James Murphy, an old gentleman eighty years of age, dropped dead from heart disease last Saturday, just across the Adair county line from Webster township. Mr. Murphy was an old settler of Adair county, but has of late lived in Kansas. He arrived at Greenfield Saturday and started to the residence of his son, Cyrus Murphy, in Grand River township. When within a mile of his son's he left the team with which he had been riding and started to walk the rest of the way. That was the last seen of him alive. Sunday morning his body was found by the side of the road. The old gentleman is known to have been subject to heart trouble, and it is thought that his joy in the prospect of meeting his children, whom he had not seen for years, brought on the attack.”

Note: His son's name was Sion, not Cyrus, but he was indeed living in Grand River twp at the time of James death. His actual death was 8 Dec. 1888

At least two of the sons fought in the Civil War’ John Whitley who signed up in Iowa and Martin V.who signed in Missouri.

submitted by Marie Clayborn

James Murphy



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